1) NSSL President Kumar hand over the SCA flag to NRCP President, NS Gomez which officially marks Philippines hosting of the 2017 SCA. 2) NRCP President, NS Gomez is with NSSL President, Dr. Vijaya Kumar, and SCJ Secretary General, Dr. Hiroshi Yoshino. 3) SCA Management Board Meeting with Executive Director Marieta Bañez Sumagaysay and President, National Scientist (NS) Edgardo D. Gomez as principal representatives of the Council.
In June 2017, the Philippines, through the auspices of the National Research Council of the Philippines (NRCP) will host the 17th Science Council of Asia (SCA) Conference. Expected to participate are delegations of renowned researchers and scientists from 31 academic institutions and organizations of the 18 member countries across Asia.
NRCP President, National Scientist Edgardo D. Gomez and NRCP Executive Director, Dr. Marieta Bañez Sumagaysay attended the 16th SCA Conference last May 30 – June 1, 2016 at Colombo, Sri Lanka. The conference, with the theme, Science for the People: Mobilizing Modern Technologies for Sustainable Development in Asia was supervised by the National Academy of Sciences of Sri Lanka (NASSL), headed by its Immediate Past President and concurrent SCA President, Prof. Vijaya Kumar.
On June 1, 2016 during the closing ceremony, the country-hosting post was officially turned over to NRCP President Gomez by Prof. Kumar through the emblematic flag hand-over ceremony.
NRCP President Gomez said that the conference will serve as the venue for scientific exchange and cooperation among Asian scholars. For 2017, the science congress will particularly focus on the efficient and effective application of science, technology, and innovations in reinforcing inclusive growth and development to provide equitable and better opportunities for all economic players on the gains of economic growth and development, NRCP President Gomez added.
The Philippines hosted the 10th SCA Conference in 2010, through NRCP, under the leadership of NRCP Immediate Past President and SCA President, Dr. Jaime C. Montoya and NRCP President Alvin B. Culaba. It was held on June 13 – 16, 2010 at Sofitel Manila with the theme, Meeting the Health Challenges in the Asia Pacific Region: Responding through Integrated and Multidisciplinary Approaches in Science and Technology.
The 3-day conference was tied up with a total of 22 technical presentations clustered into four main topics, namely: Culture and Health (5 papers); Climate Change and Health (6 papers); Technology and Health (6 papers); and Environment and Health (5 papers).
Majority of the 22 paper presentors were world renowned Filipino scientists and 5 of them were expatriates, they were: Dr. Ricardo C. H. Del Rosario, a geneticist of the Genomic Institute of Singapore; Dr. Josefino C. Cosimo, a senior research scientist of NASA USA; Dr. Teofilo A. Abrajano, Jr. a professor and department director of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NY, USA; Dr. Carlito B. Lebrilla, a professor of the University of California, Davis.
The Science Council of Japan (SCJ) is considered as the forerunner of SCA. SCJ hosted the Asia Conference on Scientific Cooperation (ACSC) for eight straight years (1993 - 2000) and in May 2000, during the 8th ACSC, the participating scientists from member-countries such as Japan, China, India, Indonesia, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines decided to transform this annual scientific conference into a permanent and independent entity – the Science Council of Asia Conference or SCA Conference with the primary goal of pooling the wisdom of the scientists across the region and communicating their research results to the rest of the world.
The first SCA Conference was held in Bangkok, Thailand in May 2001. Hence, it is held on a rotational basis so that each member country/region can actively participate.
One sterling accomplishment of SCA since it was established in 2000 is that the member-countries, through multilateral sharing of research experience and other scientific information, are able to address the diverse and urgent science-related issues common among them, like problems on swelling population, impacts of climate change, climatological hazards, environmental degradation, health, emerging diseases, medical care, food, water, energy, and public’s awareness and attitude towards science and technology.
To date, the membership of SCA expanded from 8 to 18 member countries and 31 member organizations. Mongolia joined the SCA in 2004 and Bangladesh joined in 2011, followed by Cambodia, Myanmar, Nepal and Sri Lanka in 2012 and China: Taipei in 2014.
In the Philippines, aside from NRCP, two other academic organizations are SCA members, these are: the Philippine Social Sciences Council (PSSC) and the Philippine Association of Marine Science (PAMS).